Irrepressible, giggling and clad always in vibrant pinks and joyful oranges, Anna Gerber and Britt Iversen are to the traditional world of publishing what Technicolor was to sepia – doubly vivid, three times as exciting and surely the future. Their company, Visual Editions, has now produced four books, each one a masterpiece of ‘visual storytelling’, that ensures that print and paper publications have a future despite the march of the e-reader. We joined them at their charming little studio in Clerkenwell as they told us about their desert island design classics, three beautiful books that inspired their own brand of visual storytelling.

Anna and Britt’s inspirational reads

McSweeney’s, Issue Three

‘We chose this because of the spine. It’s a very short story by David Foster Wallace that only lives on the spine. We loved the playfulness of that and how much you could do with so little,’ says Anna, ‘We loved McSweeney’s from the beginning,’ adds Britt  ‘We loved the care and craft of it, the slight madness.’

McSweeney’s, Issue Three from

BS Johnson, The Unfortunates

‘This is the second ever book in a box. Johnson was inspired by Saporta (whose book they re-published). We just love it as an object. This is a really beautiful edition. As much space as possible is used. The whole book is an object, not just the inside pages.’

BS Johnson, The Unfortunates from

Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

‘This is one of the clearest examples of what we’re now calling visual writing. It has a really close relationship between something visual and the writing, and that something visual helps tell the story.’

Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close from

Visual Editions, Unit 319, Panther House, 38 Mount Pleasant, London WC1 (020 3077 2056,


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